Wednesday, November 11
Topic: Hurricane Katrina and Environmental Racism
Post Hall 21
Hurricane Katrina survivor Paul Cunningham spoke to NY2NO Coalition
On November 11, 2009, Paul Cunningham spoke to a group of students about his experiences during and after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans. A native of St. Bernard parish in New Orleans, Paul and his family watched from a hotel room in Texarkana as they lost everything to the floodwaters. Paul was kind enough to expose the emotional devastation he witnessed coming back to his home in New Orleans, Louisiana. It was very beneficial to have him provide another example about how Hurricane Katrina ravaged through people's lives, leaving them with barely anything. In his presentation, he provided pictures and a substantial amount of background on the specific region of St. Bernard Parish. I appreciated his honest words, as they accomplished a feeling of assembly and action in lending a helping hand.
Written by Janae Cummings, LGS freshman
About the Speaker
Paul Cunningham was born in New Orleans in 1981, and lived all his life in neighboring St. Bernard parish. An avid programmer and technophile, he attended the University of New Orleans where he majored in Business Administration and Computer Science until hurricane Katrina came ashore in 2005. He and his family watched from a hotel room in Texarkana as they lost everything to the floodwaters.
After several weeks with out-of-state relatives and 6 months in a FEMA trailer, he moved in with some friends in New York City. Now Paul is married and living in Brooklyn, and always looks forward to visiting home whenever possible. Paul will share his experience during and after the hurricane and will discuss how some parts of the city were affected more than others, particularly the 9th Ward.
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